Legislation signed by Gov. Jerry Brown Aug. 24 freed up a key piece of land for development of a $1.1 billion resort hotel and convention center on Chula Vista’s bay front that’s been planned for more than two decades.

The 97-acre parcel of land would include an 18-acre public park, pedestrian trails, parking for the Chula Vista Nature Center and a buffer zone between the new development and the Sweetwater Marsh Wildlife Refuge.

The legislation by state Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez Fletcher, D-San Diego, transfers the land to the San Diego Unified Port District.

The Port District in April signed a development agreement with Chula Vista and RIDA Chula Vista, LLC – the company that would develop a 1,600-room hotel and a 275,000 square-foot convention center on a 36-acre site west of Marina Parkway between H and G Streets.

Officials estimate that the project would generate $1.3 billion and create more than 2,300 jobs during construction.

Long term, the project is expected to have an annual economic impact of $475 million and create 7,800 permanent jobs.

Enterprise Rent-A-Car and the Hertz Corporation have sued the Port District over the project, challenging a $3.50 care rental fee that would help pay for a 1,600-car parking garage that is part of the project.